Don Ward and I were utterly out of sync, from the day we met until the hour we last parted. We were baffled by each other, somehow forever falling short of achieving pleasant and productive conversation. Under any other circumstances, we never would have interacted at all. Fate had intervened, however, and he was as..
Kneeling at the altar where one day their children would be served tater tots. A big cafeteria. That’s what you need if you’re planning on running an institution that teaches children from first through eighth grade. St. Gerard, my elementary and middle school alma mater, met that requirement with room to spare. As a little..
I imagine that Dick Ireland, were he alive today, would be surprised to learn that a former student fondly and frequently recalls his old geometry and physics teacher nearly thirty years later. Once our mortarboards arced through an overcast spring sky and clattered onto the asphalt parking lot, I never returned. Nor did I bother..
There is a celebrity educator renowned among teachers for his bestselling books and the extraordinary commitment he has made to fostering the success of disadvantaged students. His achievements and advice are laudable, as is his practice of funding his school with the honorariums he earns as a popular speaker. Anyone would be thrilled to have him looking..
I grew up believing that the first President of the United States was George Worshington. Oh, I knew it wasn’t spelled that way, but that was how I said it. Similarly, I knew my home was equipped with a worsher and dryer, which we used to launder all of our clothes and linen, including the..
I hesitate to add my voice to the clamorous din of narratives and opinions examining the legacy of the 9/11 tragedy on its tenth anniversary. The notorious event was born on the dawn of media saturation, and not even the enormous towers themselves could have contained the last decade’s voluminous reporting about their destruction. It..
The rain in Maine falls mainly on the…um…rocks, I guess. The school year is now well underway in central Ohio. Students have settled into familiar routines, teachers are dutifully plowing through the curriculum, and the specter of statewide standardized achievement testing is but a faint glow on the distant horizon. It’s the season when the..
It took me over thirty years to become a coffee drinker. My java abstinence was an inconspicuous trait for the first eighteen years, as few of my peers cared for a cup o’ joe either (although one good friend did try to pull an all-nighter by eating coffee beans). Nor did things change at college,..
When our eldest daughter was quite young, my wife supplemented our income by providing child care in our home. Amber seemed to enjoy the company of her daily playmates, one of whom was a boy her age named Dylan. The two of them got along well, whether they were building with cardboard bricks or guiding..
When it comes to hitting the mark on test scores, one innovative educator at a San Diego charter school may be onto something. Ron Owens, a fifth-grade teacher at Cosner Exceptional Academy, has daringly defied conventional wisdom by putting pocket knives in the hands of elementary students. While many educators might cry foul at the..